Florida A&M University College of Law

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Florida A&M University
College of Law
Type Public
Established 1949
Dean Felecia Epps
Location Orlando, Florida, U.S.
Website www.law.famu.edu

Florida A&M University College of Law or FAMU College of Law is an ABA-accredited law school in Orlando, Florida, United States. It is part of Florida A&M University.

According to Florida A&M's 2013 ABA-required disclosures, 74.8% of the Class of 2013 obtained full-time, long-term, JD-required employment nine months after graduation, excluding solo practitioners.[1]


On December 21, 1949, a division of law was established at the then Florida A&M College and the first class was admitted in 1951. The legislature established the school because no "separate but equal" state-supported law school existed for African-Americans at that time.[2] The school's enrollment was limited to African-American male students and was located in Tallahassee, Florida.[2] The FAMU law school was closed through a vote by the Florida legislature in 1965, with the funds transferred to a new law school at formerly all-white Florida State University; vindictiveness for FAMU activism in support of desegregation was a factor.[3] In 1966 the institution lost the right to admit students after a decision by the Florida Board of Control, and two years later, in 1968, the last students graduated. Fifty-seven students graduated from the school between 1954 and 1968.[4]

The 2000 Florida Legislature unanimously passed legislation establishing a College of Law for Florida A&M University to be located in Orlando and on June 14, 2000, Governor Jeb Bush signed the bill into law. The legislation included three conditions: the school was required to serve "historically underrepresented communities"; it had to open by 2003; and it had to earn ABA accreditation within five years. The College of Law admitted its first class in 2002.[2]

The American Bar Association (ABA) granted the Florida A&M University College of Law provisional approval in August 2004, which allowed its first graduates to take the bar exam while the law school continued to work toward meeting ABA standards.

LeRoy Pernell, who was dean of the law school at Northern Illinois University, was recruited as the new dean in 2007. He fired a number of faculty and recruited 19 new faculty members. Under Pernell, the law school created its Center for International Law and Justice, and became the only historically black college accepted into the International Association of Law Schools.[2] Full ABA accreditation was achieved in July 2009.[5]

Today, the College of Law occupies its own 160,000-square-foot (15,000 m2) building at 201 Beggs Avenue in downtown Orlando. The four-story building was designed by Rhodes+Brito Architects of Orlando. The College of Law has an onsite law library that is open to the public.[6] The new building opened to students in 2005. Of the 1,807 who applied to the school in 2009, 630 were accepted and 234 enrolled.[2][7] Seventy-seven percent of the entering class are Florida residents, and 42% are white students.


From 2007 to 2010 Florida A & M University College of Law was ranked number one for diversity by U.S. News & World Report.[8]


According to Florida A&M's official 2013 ABA-required disclosures, 74.8% of the Class of 2013 obtained full-time, long-term, JD-required employment nine months after graduation, excluding solo practitioners.[1] Florida A&M's Law School Transparency under-employment score is 34.8%, indicating the percentage of the Class of 2013 unemployed, pursuing an additional degree, or working in a non-professional, short-term, or part-time job nine months after graduation.[9]


The total cost of attendance (indicating the cost of tuition, fees, and living expenses) at Florida A&M for the 2013-2014 academic year is $61,074. The Law School Transparency estimated debt-financed cost of attendance for three years is $234,817.[10]

Law Library[edit]

Florida A&M University College of Law has an onsite law library that is open to the public.[11] "The primary mission of the Florida A&M University College of Law Library is to enhance study, learning, research, and service conducted at the College of Law by providing present and future resources and services to meet the informational needs of its faculty, students, and staff. The secondary mission of the Law Library is to contribute a valuable community service by providing public access of its collections to the local legal community and to the general public." [12]


  1. ^ a b "Employment Summary for 2013 Graduates" (PDF). 
  2. ^ a b c d e Kay, Julie (Jan 1, 2010). "Saving the School". American Bar Association Journal. Retrieved 2009-12-31. 
  3. ^ Kathleen Haughney and Aaron Deslatte, "Scott, FAMU rift only the latest incident in rocky 50-year relationship", (Fort Lauderdale) Sun-Sentinel, December 24, 2011, http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2011-12-24/news/fl-famu-history-filled-with-tension-20111224_1_famu-board-famu-president-james-ammons-rick-scott, retrieved 6/4/2015.
  4. ^ "History FAMU College of Law". Retrieved 2009-12-31. 
  5. ^ FAMU College of Law homepage
  6. ^ "FAMU Law Library". Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University. Retrieved 2015-03-09. 
  7. ^ "1L Class Profile". Retrieved 2009-12-31. 
  8. ^ "FAMU Law Retains #1 Diversity Ranking". Rattler Nation. Rattler Nation. Retrieved 2015-03-09. 
  9. ^ "Florida A&M University Profile". 
  10. ^ "Florida A&M University Profile". 
  11. ^ "FAMU Law Library". Florida A&M University College of Law. 
  12. ^ "About FAMU Law Library". 

External links[edit]